Crime and Justice in a Diverse Society Micro-Credential

The Crime and Justice in a Diverse Society Micro-Credential will prepare students to work in the criminal justice system.  In the required coursework for this micro-credential, students will learn about the sociological theories and research in the fields of criminology, gender, race, class, sexuality and immigration, and will learn to think critically about power, inequality and marginality in the criminal justice system. This micro-credential will also prepare students for advanced study in the fields of law, criminal justice, criminology and sociology.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is a Micro-Credential?
A. Smaller than a minor, certificate or degree program, micro-credentials allow you to meet your personalized learning needs by gaining knowledge and skills in areas that are relevant to your academic or professional goals. Micro-Credentials equip you with "digital badges" that showcase your achievements.

Q. Who is eligible for the Crime and Justice in a Diverse Society program?
A. This program is open to anyone who would like to learn more about the subject of criminology. Sociology majors might consider enrolling in this program to gain expertise in this area. Students from other departments may find that this program adds value to their degree. UB students must have a minimum GPA of 2.0 overall in order to enroll. Non-degree students seeking a credential, but not yet ready to pursue a four-year degree, may be interested as well. Non-degree learners should visit the registrar's website for more information.

Q. What skills will I obtain?
A. The Crime and Justice in a Diverse Society Micro-Credential will prepare students to work in the criminal justice system. In the required coursework for this micro-credential, students will learn about the sociological theories and research in the fields of criminology, gender, race, class, sexuality and immigration, and will learn to think critically about power, inequality and maginality in the criminal justice system. This micro-credential will also prepare students for advanced study in the fields of law, criminal justice, criminology and sociology.

Q. How long will it take to complete this program?
A. Approximately three semesters if you take the courses one at a time. The program can be completed more quickly if you take more than one course for the micro-credential at a time.

Q. What will I earn when I complete this program?
A. You will earn a notation on your academic transcript as well as a "digital badge" that you may use on your digital resume or social media sites.

Q. How do I enroll?
A. An online enrollment form can be found below.

To learn more about Micro-Credentials and digital badges, please visit: buffalo.edu/micro-credentials. For more information specifically about the Crime and Justice in a Diverse Society Micro-Credential, please contact Kristen Schultz Lee, director of undergraduate studies.

Program Requirements

Learners are required to complete nine (9) credits of coursework. Students must earn a "B" or better in the following courses:

1. One (1) required course: SOC 211 Sociology of Diversity

2. Two (2) elective courses from the following:

  • SOC 317, Criminal Justice Systems
  • SOC 319, Juvenile Justice
  • SOC 337, Sociology of Punishment
  • SOC 343, Gender & Crime
  • SOC 357, Race, Crime and Criminal Justice

Please see the Undergraduate Catalog for current course descriptions.

Following completion of the crime and justice in a diverse society coursework, students must submit a 5-page integrative paper drawing on material from the courses they have taken to Kelly Crean, undergraduate program coordinator. The paper must address one of the following topics and cite at least 5 academic readings from the crime and justice in a diverse society coursework:

  1. What is the relationship between social stratification/inequality and criminal behavior? How does the criminal justice system increase or decrease inequality in a diverse society?
  2. How do categories of diversity intersect and create complex institutional inequalities and advantages in the criminal justice system?
  3. Describe how race influences decisions made by actors in the criminal justice system – in juries, sentencing, the death penalty, and / or mass incarceration. In addition, describe the impact that the criminal justice system has on families and communities of color.
  4. How is gender relevant to theory and research about the causes of crime? Do men and women commit different acts of crime? Are (potential) causes of crime by men and by women different? Are the same forms of control/punishment/rehabilitation appropriate for men and for women? Why or why not? How do transgender prisoners challenge or require reconsideration of gendered practices in the criminal justice system?

How to Apply

Please complete and submit the following application form:

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